In an effort to stop the vast gathering of data on children, Denmark wants to increase the age at which companies collecting personal information from minors, like Google, Snapchat, and Meta, are allowed to do so, the government announced on Monday.
It aims to raise the current age of consent for youngsters to share personal data with tech companies from 13 to between 15 and 16 years old. Additionally, in order to use data from children younger than that, the companies will need parental approval.
Business Minister Morten Bodskov stated, “The tech giants must take greater responsibility,” as the government outlined plans to limit the influence of big international tech firms.
“We must put an end to their opaque algorithms, which use crazy methods to keep children and adults in front of the screen and harvest unimaginable amounts of personal information.”
The move comes as several European nations—including Hungary, Lithuania, and the Netherlands—are working on laws with a similar age restriction to Germany’s 16-year-old legal drinking age.
A bill to protect internet privacy is being drafted in the US; if passed, it would prohibit businesses from collecting personal data on individuals without their knowledge who are 16 years old or younger and mandate that they give young users the option to delete their data.
The efforts are based on suggestions made by an expert panel and are expected to become law later this year.